Lunch is a design research journal edited by students at the University of Virginia School of Architecture.

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Lunch is soliciting critical essays and design propositions for its eleventh issue, on the theme of Domestication. Please submit an abstract of no more than 350 words articulating the thesis of your essay or design proposition, focusing on one or more of the following themes:


Practices of domestication are practices of control: they redraw the boundaries of the domestic realm by imposing order on people, animals, and territories. But hybrid species and spaces inhabit the threshold of domesticity, complicating the neat distinction between tame and wild. Can alternative models of domestication subvert the illusion of complete control? Can domestication lead to cohabitation instead of domination?

The household is increasingly situated in economic and ecological networks whose operations extend far beyond the traditional domain of the home. Can our understanding of the domestic sphere expand to include the infrastructures on which the contemporary home relies? Do emerging systems of home-based economic production demand new forms of domestic architecture? Can the productive home serve as urban infrastructure in the post-industrial city?

The American home is expected to be a spatial representation of the nuclear family, an extra-governmental realm of complete safety and privacy, a barometer of personal economic achievement, and a site of patriotic participation in national agendas. Who is excluded from these domestic myths? Who is entrapped by them? How are they enforced through the design of domestic space, and how can design help imagine new norms of domesticity?


Homes are fixed. Homes are stable. Unless of course they aren’t. The nomadic and the migratory represent alternative paradigms in which the home is distributed and the domestic is dispersed. Can these critical frameworks address contemporary economic and ecological predicaments? Can we learn to see transient inhabitation as something other than the breakdown of a domestic ideal?